Well, not really, but in the midst of insomnia yesterday morning, I thought, why not finish the bag I started on Monday.
It’s another diaper bag and matching chaning pad for one of Nathan’s friends from college. She expressed a need for one and I already had one half cut out, so it was a quick project. There are lots of interior pockets and I made a 3 tab button closure because I was feeling quirky.
matching changing pad/playmat
Noah and I listened to some polka while I sewed. He thinks accordion is funny–or at least he drools and coos and laughs with sheer delight when he hears it. He’s particularly fond of Skater’s Waltz, which, I admit I practiced A LOT while he was a cookin’. I think I’ve asked this before, but it’s always interesting to me–what do you listen to while you’re working?
I saw this $20 version of the huge Pantone color deck on Sewing Divas today. I’ve been hoping to find a cheaper version of their big deck for a while now. I love love love love color and am always frustrated when colors don’t match just as much as I am much more peaceful when colors do match. I think this will save me buckets of time selecting fabric and other such things.
In other news, I finished recording some violin for this project today. I’m really happy with how I played and I’m excited to see the whole thing come together. We seriously have so many talented people in our church. It’s cool to see everyone come together for this.
I decided today too that I would like to have an mp3 player. My students are constantly asking me why I don’t own one, and really I suppose it’s a lifelong vendetta that I have against Apple which began as many small irritations growing up working on Apples at school but was FOREVER cemented after learning Finale on an Apple in college. At first I thought it was the program that was so darn hostile. After buying Finale for my PC when I needed to write accompaniment tracks for my choir at school, I soon learned that no, it was the Apple that forced me to spend 3 times as long on each project as it should have taken…that much extra time in a very updated computer lab at a VERY good music school with MIDI keyboards and every other thing that should have made things faster. I’m not computer-illiterate either which made the whole process even more aggravating. So, even though I’m a music teacher, even though I listen to a lot of music here there and everywhere, even though toting around my CD collection is a bit of a hassle, I have stubbornly refused to buy an mp3 player because I was not going to buy an iPod and thereby support the very company that had caused me so much technology-related stress. Silly me though–clearly there are other people who make such devices. So my task for this week is to read some reviews and find a good deal on a non-Apple mp3 player. I sincerely apologize if you are an Apple fan. I shall never be. I hope you can forgive me for my opinion and consider that I do not mean to offend.
Posted in music
Tagged a tad geeky
This week at school (and the previous 3) have been WACKY!!! I had a program on Tuesday night for all of my kids–that’s 1st through 6th grade–with each grade presenting something plus Kindergarten. Everything went really well, but I can’t say that I’m not happy to do be done with that. The kids have been awesome through all of it which can be evidenced in how they sang their little hearts out.
I say all of this because I took a break from having choir rehearsals this month until today to prepare for this program. I’m glad to be back having choir. I was so glad, I baked a truckload of chocolate chip cookies for all of them. I started doing this for my choir a couple of years ago to (ahem) “encourage” people to join choir, but I’ve kept doing it because it’s such a neat community building time. After everyone had had seconds, there were still about a dozen cookies left, so we looked through their new music and I asked questions mostly relating to them having to physically read the octavo (ex: how many measures of rest are there before part 1 comes in?). It was like Jeopardy! with cookies. One of my 6th graders offered to give up a second cookie that he might win if he could give it to his 4th grade brother and sister. I had no idea a little bit of baking would foster such amazing good will.
My 6th graders this year have historically been a pretty rough group. I’ve seen them through 5 years of a lot of really hard days. This year I decided I wasn’t going to be afraid of them anymore. I can’t change the circumstances in their lives that make them react to things the way that they do, I can just try and love them the best I can.
So today, I way went out on a limb. There’s this beautiful lullaby that is in part of Jill Trinka’s collection.
The lyrics are thus:
Lady, lady, buy a broom for my baby
Lady, lady, buy a broom for my baby
Sweep it low, sweep it high, sweep the cobwebs out of the sky
Lady, lady, buy a broom for my baby
Text wise–this is SO NOT APPROPRIATE for 6th graders, but again, I decided to take a chance. Why? Because the melody is stunning (and will help my kids with tonic and dominant chords) and they need more beauty in their lives.
It was AWESOME to watch them learning this song. They were all embarrassed, but I could tell that they really liked it too–like they were shy about admitting how much their sweet little hearts were touched by this simple little tune. In this super-techy world filled with so much noise and ugliness, I’m reminded of how the joy of a simple song can be just the balm a weary heart needs. And the peace of God which passes all understanding will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.
Hello. I’m Lise. I’ve had a bad day. My cherry strudel EXPLODED in the oven and I burned my finger.
But I decided to pick myself up, dust myself off and start all over again. So I picked up my accordion and started to practice some music for Oktoberfest. That Top of the Hill Polka really is fun.
That was nice, but something was missing. I knew it–I needed a COSTUME for Oktoberfest.
Thankfully I had a light breakfast (what with my strudel EXPLODING)…I seriously don’t know how ladies ever used to breathe in these corset thingys. I sure am playing better though.
What’s that? I sound like Myron Floren? Really?! Why thank you.
when you’re crafting/sewing?
Rick Bayless and his daughter Lanie’s cookbook has these neat little blurbs in each chapter of suggested music for cooking the various things each chapter is devoted to. When I got this book and saw it I was intrigued because I never actually listened to anything while working before (with the exception of listening to all of my music history listening assignments while doing homework in college).
So for me, certain days have certain moods. Today is a Barber of Seville day–Rossini matches my happy mood. Tomorrow probably will be polka time, and Saturday might be Mozart or Bach.
Here’s the start of my dress. I finished the front and back sections and pinned the whole thing onto Tina. I’m not sure I like the proportions yet. I cut the pattern so to accomodate my smaller top/larger bottom….but it looks like the opposite is true at the moment. Rossini will help me figure it out. Hopefully I’ll finish it all tomorrow.
I finished my first accordion book today. I’m so proud of myself. I’ve worked really hard, and I have to say it’s very gratifying to get to this point. I got this certificate for finishing. I wish I had those kinds of things when I was a kid learning to play my violin–I think I would have advanced more quickly…who knew I would be so motivated by a wee piece of paper.
Taking video of yourself is not the easiest thing in the world, especially when you only have a wee digital camera to do the job. I love this tune. I hope it brightens your day.
I’ve been trucking away at my accordion practicing. I’m amazed at how quickly I’m getting better. I forget that I am a trained violinist and had to take 4 semesters of piano in college, but I’m still excited to be hearing myself get better and feel it getting easier. What a fun instrument this is turning out to be! I’m finding too that since my goal is not perfection as it often is and has been in playing violin, it’s not only more enjoyable to play, but my playing is becoming that natural sort of playing that I worked so many years to achieve as a violinist and finally attained in college. That being said, I’m very much a beginner and am playing rather simple things now, but it’s motivating to see progress nonetheless. I feel really blessed in having found my teacher too–he’s been teaching for something like 55 years and is truly a master accordionist. He plays a little at my lessons and it’s truly awe-inspiring.
Here’s what I’m working on (I’ll have to YouTube it when I master the chord changes on the second page):
So my aunt Gina (who I made the purse for in January) used to play the accordion. I always thought that was cool growing up, but I have ALWAYS been a violinist. I HAD to take class piano in college for my music ed degree and I passed my finals due to the grace of God and TA’s that were very generous. During my sophomore year, I had a really difficult living situation. That was the year that I really discovered polka. You can’t listen to polka and be upset for too long. Seriously. Ever. It’s impossible. And if you can, you have a black black heart. So sometime maybe a year ago I decided–hey, I have some reasonable piano skills and I have an extra violin that I’ve needed to sell, so why not sell that and buy an accordion? Well, Sunday, I finally found one through the beauty of Craigslist. It’s awesome. It’s good for me to have a different musical outlet besides my violin. I think sometimes I get bogged down with perfection when it comes to playing my violin and I forget about the sheer joy of playing. So someday when I figure out all these crazy buttons, I’ll play polkas myself when I’m feeling blue and I’ll brighten people’s days.